Financial Abuse in Toxic Relationships Quiz: Find Out If It’s Happening to You

Financial Abuse in Toxic Relationships Quiz: Find Out If It’s Happening to You

 Are you being financially abused by a toxic narcissist? Take the test now!

Are you in a relationship with a malignant narcissist who controls your money or who won’t give you access to your family money? Do you feel like you can’t get away because you don’t have the ability to pull together the funds? You might be dealing with financial abuse.

What is a malignant narcissist?

A malignant Narcissist is someone who has narcissistic personality disorder (NPD) along with antisocial features, paranoid traits, and ego-driven aggression.  One of the primary similarities betweeen all malignant narcissists is the marked lack of compassionate and emotional empathy, along with the fact that they actively behave from that perspective, making them incredibly cruel to those closest to them. They may also exhibit an absence of conscience, a psychological need for power and an inflated sense of self-importance and entitlement.

What is financial abuse?

Financial abuse is a manipulation and control tactic that malignant narcissists are known to use to control and manipulate you through money. They may do this by refusing to give you access to your own money or to the family money, or by preventing you from getting a job or bank account of your own. They may also cause you to lose a job you already have or actively work to get you fired. In some cases, they might actually go the other direction, where they refuse to get a job of their own, and they will still control all of your money and refuse to give you access.  Financial abuse often looks like genuine concern for your financial wellbeing and/or for your “own good” at first, and in some cases, survivors say they felt “taken care of” in the beginning, but later realized they were trapped as a result of giving up the control over their own finances.

Narcissists Control You With Money: Financial Abuse in Toxic Relationships

In this video, I’m sharing the truth about narcissists and how they try to control you with money.

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Tips For Finding A Safe Place To Live When Leaving An Abusive Relationship

Tips For Finding A Safe Place To Live When Leaving An Abusive Relationship

Are you in the process of preparing to leave an abusive relationship? If you are, you’ve got a lot of things to consider. One of the most important is where do you go from here – as in, where will you live when you leave?

Finding a Safe Place to Live When You Leave an Abusive Relationship

Once you are ready to leave your abusive relationship, and you have the important documents you need in hand, you’ve got a good start. You’ll have your car fueled up and ready to go when you make that final move. Where do you go? Fortunately, there are options. Making that plan before you leave is an absolute must – but when you’re being financially abused (as is often the case in these toxic relationships) or you’re struggling financially for any reason, you might be worried about how you’ll survive. And of course, you’ve got to consider your safety, as well as the safety of your kids, if you have any. Even a “non-violent” abuser can become violent when you leave – so be very careful.

What is Financial Abuse?

Financial Abuse is a manipulation and control tactic used by an abuser in which they use money to control and or manipulate you. This can be done by restricting you from accessing family money or by forcing you to provide all of the money. Financial abuse may involve blatant lying about, theft of, and/or hiding of family money, among other forms of manipulation and control.

This video offers an expanded discussion on financial abuse in toxic relationships.

Useful Resources for Financial Abuse Victims

Places to Live When You Leave an Abusive Relationship

Whether you’re dealing with financial abuse or not, you still might not be sure where to go when you’re getting out of the relationship. Here are some options you can consider for a place to live when you’re leaving an abuser.

Maybe You Don’t Have to Leave

While this is not always an option, in some cases, you might actually be able to keep your home and kick the abuser out. This could be the case when you owned the home prior to the relationship, or when you’ve paid for all or most of the home. It might also be the case when you have children who are school-aged. However, as you’re probably well-aware, getting a toxic person to leave their home can be nearly impossible in some cases. If that is your situation, you might temporarily leave and work with an attorney to legally evict them.* Be sure to check the eviction laws in your area and speak to an expert or attorney who can help.

*This is not legal advice and should not be taken as such. Always check your local laws. 

Set Yourself Up Ahead of Time

If you’re not being financially abused and you can’t keep your existing home, you could set yourself up in a new home or apartment on the down-low. Don’t let the abuser know what you’re doing. Make sure your phone isn’t being tracked, and if it is, leave it at home and get a backup while you set up the new place so they won’t be able to find the new place if that is a concern. Over the course of a month or so, you could rent a new place and set it up, slowly moving your things a little at a time. Then, you can just be gone one day when your abuser comes home. Alternatively, one survivor I know happened to own an apartment building. She actually moved her abuser into an apartment and taped the key, address, and a goodbye note to her front door the day she changed the locks. Obviously, this option is not going to work for everyone who is in this situation as narcissists and other abusers often DO financially abuse their victims.

Stay With A Trusted Friend Or A Trusted Family Member

You might have the option to crash with a friend or family member for a while while you get back on your feet. Be aware that it’s really important for you to be open and honest about the abuse you endure when you speak to this person about staying with them. Even if this person isn’t able to let you stay forever, it can be a way to get out immediately and plan your next steps.

However, not everyone is so fortunate to have a trusted friend or family member who will gladly take them in after they leave an abusive relationship. Since most abusers end up isolating their victims, you may have no one left who you feel you can trust. Don’t worry – as alone as you feel, there are hundreds of thousands of people in the same position. But what do you do in that case? And what happens to you if you are in that position? Fortunately, there are other options you can consider.

Find A Domestic Violence Shelter

If you cannot go and stay with a trusted friend or family member, you can always stay at a domestic violence shelter. These shelters are also known as women’s shelters, and they are generally a group of apartments or a building where abused women can escape from their abusers. Even better, these shelters will be sensitive to your specific situation, so you never have to worry about the abuser finding out where you are as everything is kept private. You will be given a burner phone or an unlisted landline in the meantime, or you can always change your cell number.

If you have children, the good news is that there is usually enough room for both you and the children. Generally, the shelter will provide everything for your basic needs, including childcare and food. You cannot stay at the shelter for an infinite amount of time, but you won’t need to worry about that. If you don’t have a job, the shelter will help you find one (and even offer you job training in many cases). You’ll also get help with finding a permanent place to live when the time comes for you to do so. The great thing about the shelter is that you can receive access to legal help, support groups, counseling, financial help, health services, and educational opportunities.

In other words, you are not left high and dry if you go to a shelter – you’ll be given help and resources that can save you in so many ways.

Staying Safe at a Domestic Violence Shelter

Often, when you’ve been in an abusive relationship with a toxic narcissist, you might find yourself worried that they will become stalkers (and they often do). The domestic violence shelter option can be your safest bet in these cases if you don’t have a friend or family member who can protect you.

You are usually not required to give your personal information when you go to a shelter, and they may even give you a false name to keep you protected. If you are unsure how to get access to a shelter, you can talk to your therapist and look for organizations in your area about domestic abuse. Reach out to them, and they will be there to help you.

Alternative Option for a Place to Stay When Leaving a Narcissist

If you don’t have a friend or family member you can stay with, and you’re not able to get into a shelter (or prefer not to), you might need an alternative option for a place to go when you leave. So, here’s a quick, easy, and relatively cheap place to live (at least temporarily) when you leave your abuser. This idea came from one of the members of our SPANily Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Group chat.

It’s just a really smart idea for where to live when you need to move quickly – and I had to share it with you!  See the video here or on YouTube.

Important to Consider: If you choose to move to a new city or area to get away from your abuser, you will need to become acclimated to the new location. That also means if you have kids, they will need to go to a new school.

Ultimately, remember this: You are never completely stuck. And while leaving might mean that you have to temporarily adjust your lifestyle, it can also mean that you actually get your life back. You deserve that – and you do not need to trap yourself with the abuser. You can break free and stay safe. Here are some additional resources for you.

Find a safe place to stay when leaving an abusive relationship

QueenBeeing Resources for Narcissistic Abuse & Narcissistic Abuse Recovery

See More Options for Help On Our Emergency Domestic Violence Resources Page

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Joining A Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Group?

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Joining A Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Group?

So, you just went no contact with a narcissistic ex or narcissistic parent, and you are struggling with the trauma associated with the abuse you endured during the time you were in their presence. Maybe you’ve found a therapist, or you’re getting weekly narcissistic abuse recovery coaching, but you feel like need something more when it comes to getting the support you need so you can heal. Or maybe you can’t afford to pay for a therapist or coach, but you find yourself feeling very alone in the world and you just want someone who understands.

Any of these issues can be solved with one single step: you can join a free, online, confidential narcissistic abuse recovery support group.  But, when you’re working on building your support system in your own narcissistic abuse recovery, there are things you need to consider.

Beware of Predatory Groups

There are so many groups out there that are amazing and supportive. But there are those which are more predatory and money-focused, and they can actually do more harm than good for your recovery. This is exactly why it’s so important to be really careful when choosing your recovery support team. Sadly, there are people who claim to be advocating for abuse victims, but who are actually only out to make money. These people sometimes offer support systems that are not only not reliable, but that are often over-priced and which don’t work effectively.

This is often due to the fact that these people aren’t actually survivors, but business people who see our recovery from abuse as a potential cash-cow. Just remember: no matter how good the hype, not everyone who claims to want to help you is genuine. With that being said, the large majority of those who are sharing their experiences and creating support groups around narcissistic abuse recovery will often be very genuine in their efforts as they are survivors themselves.

Get Safe Online Support for Narcissistic Abuse Recovery

Here’s some good news. Here at QueenBeeing, we are survivors who do what we do to help our fellow survivors – and it’s why the majority of our services (including our online narcissistic abuse recovery support groups) are free. One of the best things about our ever-evolving technology is that you do not need to leave your home to attend any support group meeting. You can hop online to one from the comfort of your own home. This is especially helpful as our society is currently discouraging large in-person group meetings, but also for those who are still actively dealing with the abuse who may struggle to justify a meeting to an abuser. An online group offers you the ability to get support from the comfort of your home (or wherever you happen to be) on your own schedule.

And, sometimes, just being validated by a group can help you to see the truth about your life and can lead you to want to take action to change it – and that is what makes support not only appealing for survivors of narcissistic abuse but truly necessary.

Joining an Online Narcissistic Abuse Recovery Support Group: Pros and Cons to Consider

Should you join a support group for narcissistic abuse recovery? Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of joining one right now.

The Pros Of Joining A Support Group For Narcissistic Abuse Recovery

The idea of joining a narcissistic abuse recovery support group can be appealing and daunting. However, there are several advantages of doing so, and let’s talk about the pros right now:

  • You can have access to the group 24/7. If you are too busy with work or other duties during the day and don’t have the time to get the most of the groups in the evening, there is no worry about that. The access for you is there at any time of the day and the night. If you need to go into the group at 3 am even, it is there!
  • You can express the pain from the abuse you endured with the narcissist to people who get it –  You are in a group where others like yourself face trauma from having to endure narcissistic abuse. Those who are in the group understand, and by knowing that, you know that you have a safe place to express your pain, sorrow and talk about your trauma. That is because others there understand.
  • You can keep your private experiences private from the people in your “real life.” At least until you’re ready to share with them, by joining a narcissistic abuse recovery support group, you won’t have to worry about talking to a friend about heavy stuff. This might be because you worry they won’t understand where you’re coming from as they haven’t had similar experiences, or it might be that you worry they won’t believe you. And in some cases, you won’t want to share your experiences yet because you don’t even really understand them yourself.
  • You will receive empathy and support, and validation. In a narcissistic abuse recovery support group, you will receive the validation you need and support and empathy because, once again, those in the group understand where you are coming from. You won’t deal with toxic positivity or those who cannot empathize with you, making a world of difference with your recovery.

However, like with anything else, there are both pros and cons. Let’s talk about the cons when it comes to joining a narcissistic abuse recovery support group.

The Cons Of Joining An Abuse Recovery Support Group

You just read about the advantages of joining an abuse recovery support group. Let’s now talk about some of the disadvantages to keep in mind:

  • Some members can troll you – You know that most of the members in groups are there to support you, but unfortunately, there can be trolls who can make your suffering worse. And even if there are members who are not technically trying to stir the pot, they can be rude if they disagree with you, which can upset you even more. The best thing to do in that situation is to notify the group’s admin and block them. In our QueenBeeing SPANily narcissistic abuse recovery support groups, our highly-skilled admin team (also survivors themselves) actively monitors our groups to prevent this as often as possible and actively removes people who violate our safety guidelines in order to keep you safe.
  • You are faced with too many reminders of the abuse you endured – At the beginning of your recovery, you might really need to read about the experiences of others as it can help to validate your own. But eventually, you might find that reading the experiences of others who endured narcissistic abuse and will become too much of a reminder for you. That can sometimes set you back in your recovery. The best thing to do in this situation is to limit the amount of time you spend in these groups. You can also check out the SPANily narcissistic abuse recovery support groups page, where you’ll find a variety of groups for each stage in recovery. This will help you to get the kind of support you need in whichever stage you’ve found yourself in – even if you’re past the abuse and ready to move forward with your new life.
  • You aren’t comfortable sharing your experiences with groups. There are some people who just prefer to avoid sharing their abuse story with a large group of people, and that’s totally okay. Everyone’s journey is different. If you are among those who would prefer to share and heal from your experiences with just one person, you might like to check out our narcissistic abuse recovery coaching page. If you’d prefer a smaller group, you should consider our small group-coaching program.

Before joining a narcissistic abuse recovery group, you will want to weigh the pros and cons and determine whether or not joining a support group is the best thing to do in your particular situation. In some cases, it may not be, which is why you want to think it through thoroughly before taking action.

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Male Survivors of Narcissistic Abuse Should Be Recognized, Not Minimized and Invalidated.

Male Survivors of Narcissistic Abuse Should Be Recognized, Not Minimized and Invalidated.

If you are a man who has been dealing with narcissistic abuse in a toxic relationship, you are likely filled with self-doubt and you might not even know where to turn for help. Despite the popular assumption that only women are abused in relationships, the opposite is true.

Men experience toxic relationship abuse too – and they are not at fault.

You are not responsible for the toxic and hurtful behavior of another person no matter what your gender. I was talking with a friend about his feelings of self-blame after being in a toxic relationship. He was told that he was at fault by the abusive woman and because of his ability to be accountable to his own part in things became convinced that even though logically it could not be his fault he must still be to blame. This issue with men seems to go deeper because of the way they are taught by society as well as the lack of support surrounding emotional abuse toward men. Why is this? The issue is complicated. 

Female Abusers Fly Under the Radar.

Female abusers may be more prominent than you’d expect. This video goes into detail about toxic women and their impact on their victims. Any of that sound familiar to you?

Men Are Taught Their Feelings Don’t Matter.

Men seem to be taught that their feelings do not matter and when abuse happens to them in a relationship and it is somehow their own fault.  Women who are abused are also taught it is their fault, especially with narcissists, however, it seems men have a secret shame they also carry about what it means to be a man and experience their emotions around abuse. Male survivors tell me that even though men recognize the abuse,  they lack the support needed to truly personally acknowledge it and leave the situation. Friends may likely say you are weak and should just stand up to the abuser.

Good Men Take Care of Their Wives, Right? 

Or in the case of a man with a narcissistic woman, the message might be something like “ a happy wife is a happy life” leaving the man with the belief that he has to accept the behaviors, that this somehow is normal. Men have told me they use avoidance or shut down in order to cope, pushing their own feelings aside to “ keep the peace”. Having very few outlets for being heard leaves a lot of men totally invalidated.  As an example of what I am talking about, another male survivor of abuse told me, “Many men have this false thought that as a man they aren’t allowed to speak up about abuse. They fear they will be shunned and laughed at and told they “let it” happen. This is, unfortunately, a stigma that is very hard to remove.” 

Men Who Speak Up Might Be Invalidated.

Men who have survived narcissistic abuse face the problem of when speaking out about the abuse they have suffered, people often do not believe them. What can be frightening at times is that people instead believe they, the man, are the abuser.  It is a challenge for people to see at times that being screamed at and devalued by any gender is abuse including when it happens to men, and this can be incredibly invalidating and demoralizing for male victims of narcissistic abuse. Worse, invalidation is one of the most painful parts of this kind of abuse in general – so not being heard or believed can be especially traumatic for men who have been abused by females or any partner in relationships. 

You Are Not Alone

There are so many things that I can not write and even as I am writing this I struggle to say all that I feel needs to be said. In order to help men who have survived narcissistic abuse by any person in their life, know you are not alone and your feelings matter, your experience matters.  The delicate nature of feelings for both men and women makes it very difficult to talk openly about this. Some men find there is no support, not from family or friends when they mention the issues that are facing.  

Your Abuse Experience is Valid.

The message I would like to give to men is this. Your experience is valid. Your feelings around that experience are real and they matter. Most of all though, you did not deserve abuse. Think of the abuse in reverse ( man abusing woman) it would be blatantly unacceptable on all levels. We know with the complexity of narcissistic abuse that in almost all situations the abuse can be covert and very difficult to be recognized by anyone outside of the relationship, This is not to minimize the abuse women also face but instead to illustrate the challenges men face when speaking about the abuse they have lived with. 

Get personal support in your narcissistic abuse recovery.

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Tips For Leaving An Abusive Relationship Safely

Tips For Leaving An Abusive Relationship Safely

If you’re in a relationship with someone who is abusing you, whether this is physically, psychologically, emotionally, or otherwise, and you’re ready to consider leaving them, you may not know where to begin.

If your partner is a narcissist and has been subjecting you to narcissistic abuse, gaslighting, and other forms of manipulation, you might have spent a lot of time doubting yourself, not sure whether you’re right and they’re toxic, or whether they are right and you’re crazy. If you do still happen to be doubting yourself, you might be interested in taking one of my free narcissistic abuse recovery self-assessments, right here.

In either case, you’re here because you have finally have had enough, and you are ready to leave. If all of this sounds like you, you’re in the right place. In addition to downloading your free copy of the PLAN (Preparing to Leave A Narcissist) Toolkit, be sure to take note of the following tips.

Tips to Prepare to Leave a Toxic Relationship with a Narcissist Safely

What can you do to prepare yourself to leave a toxic and abusive relationship? It is not as easy as picking up and going. Here are some of the most important things to consider before you leave a narcissist and an abusive relationship.

Know Where You Stand Financially

Financial abuse is real when it comes to narcissists, and the last thing you want to do is leave the abusive relationship and find out the hard way you are not financially fit to leave. That is a critical step to take when you are married to an abusive person – and there are some really specific things of which to be aware. Once you know the financial facts, you can present them to the court, and you will get your fair share of the money. That means you must know what you have in the bank and all of the debt that you carry. A bonus tip is to take screenshots of the accounts, so you know what you have available before you go. This video offers additional tips on dealing with financial abuse in toxic relationships.

Grab Essential Documents

The last thing you want to do is leave essential documents behind so you will want to collect them. Make sure you have access to your personal IDs such as your driver’s license and passport, your birth certificate, as well as the ones of your children, passports, marriage license, investment numbers, car documents, and social security number. Make sure you have your bank and mortgage/lease information as well. Take pictures of them if you are afraid that the abuser will destroy them. The PLAN covers a full list of documents you’ll want to gather before you go.

Begin Saving Money And Get A Job If You Must

As much as you want to make sure that you get your fair share of the money you’re due from the marriage, you will want to make sure that you begin saving your own. If you need to get a job, even a side hustle, you should do it That will only help you feel more secure about leaving your abuser. Many abused spouses stay in toxic marriages because of finances. If you can support yourself and your kids if you have any, even if you are just getting by, that is better than staying in a toxic relationship. These days, there are plenty of work-from-home jobs you could do, even without telling the narcissist, if you play it right. Just be careful with your earnings and keep them in a separate account from the narcissist’s money. You can look into services like PayPal or online banks like Chime to create a private account without the narcissist’s knowledge, for example. Bonus tip: you might also want to consider checking your credit through a free service like Credit Sesame, which also offers you tips on how to improve your credit score. This video offers additional tips on how to leave a narcissist with no money.

Make Changes To Passwords

If you are afraid that the abuser is monitoring your social media activity and emails, then you want to change your passwords, so your abuser does not have access to any of it. Change all of your passwords, whether for social media, online banking, or any other platform. Keep the passwords in a safe list that the abuser cannot access.

Tell Your Friends And Trusted Family Members The Truth

When you are about to leave your abuser, you must tell those you trust to support you through it and even offer you a place to stay temporarily until you can get on your feet. You will also feel more secure and safe while leaving, and you will also need them to encourage you to go on with your plan for leaving as it is a daunting thing to do, but a courageous thing you can do for yourself.

Reach Out To Experts And Shelters

If you don’t know where to begin when it comes to preparing yourself to leave the abusive relationship, contact a family lawyer, a therapist, a narcissistic abuse recovery coach, or another expert who can safely advise you. Many lawyers offer initial free consultations and advise you on collecting financial data and everything you need. Also, contact shelters or a therapist can give you some leads to shelters if you are unsure where to look. Be sure to check out our domestic violence resources page as well.

Leaving an abuser is a scary thing to do, but if you utilize these tips and get the support you need, you can do it. You deserve to be safe and healthy.

QueenBeeing Resources for Narcissistic Abuse & Narcissistic Abuse Recovery

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